The accident report on ‘Ekiti 7’ – Part 2
Continued from yesterday
On hearing that, our consultant got infuriated and threatened the prison official that if by the next clinical visit the prisoner had not received her prescribed drugs he would personally take the matter up. He went further to warn the prison official that if per adventure he decided to stop bringing the lady to the clinic that he would also still take the matter up. As we were intent on knowing more, the consultant thereafter told us that he had relatives working with the Nigerian Prisons hence he knew what happened there.
He went further to tell us the federal government’s weekly budgets for each prisoner but these prisoners are fed with what was not palatable even to lower animals. We ended up contributing money among ourselves to buy the drugs for her before she was taken away. In view of this, I ask again, who are the cabals managing the FRSC budgetary allocation for fuelling their vehicles? When Ocholi and some members of his family died, the FRSC officials told Nigerians the same thing. According to them, Ocholi and his family members died due to over-speeding and tyre burst. Does it then mean that every accident that happens along the Abuja-Kaduna road is due to over-speeding? Could it not also be as a result of the deplorable state of the road?
More worrisome is the fact that FRSC officials who arrived more than 40 minutes later, are the ones claiming to know more facts about the accident than the survivors and other eyewitnesses. I ask again, how can this be? Was it by the use of voodoo (which is not alien to our culture) or did the FRSC officials secretly install closed circuit televisions (CCTV) on our highways?
I do not want to talk about the money the surviving doctors gave to both the police and the FRSC officials for performing the duties they are being paid for. I got angrier when I read the FRSC report that said that over-speeding caused the tyre to burst. I asked if the fellow who issued that statement had any knowledge of Charles’s law of gases, the principles of expansion of solids or even elementary physics. I assured myself that the report was a mockery of our federal character (as it is enshrined in S.14 (3), CFRN 1999 as amended).
Americans call theirs Affirmative Action but here in order to maintain the federal character, meritocracy gives way to mediocrity. So I would like to ask the FRSC official that issued that crap why over-speeding does not cause tyre burst at nights and how he managed to know more about the accident than the eyewitnesses. Or is it only in Nigeria where over speeding bursts tyres? Are there no relationship between tyre burst and potholes on our roads?
Instead of telling their employers (the Federal Government) to fix our federal roads, they are busy finding a way to knock the head after the anus has farted. It was the same FRSC that told Nigerians that Ocholi’s driver had no driver’s licence, as if drivers undergo any special training before obtaining the licence. Even, the blind, the deaf and the aged can easily obtain driver’s licences in Nigeria. Many people have driver’s licence which they use mainly as a means of identification and many of them already had it before even learning how to drive. To me, Nigeria’s driver’s licence is just for identification in banks and other places. How is a driver’s licence issued in Nigeria? Just pay your fees online or in the bank, then go and book the day for the capturing of your biometric data and after that the licence is ready for you. What role would such a licence have played to make Ocholi’s driver more responsible or even professional on the road? If it were in developed countries, FRSC officials would be sweating to defend their incompetence and ineptitude in handling the case of the Ekiti State NMA delegates but here they are the ones on the offensive, attacking both the bereaved and the deceased with their fallacies.
It is like in Nigeria, there are few sentences one must learn in order to work in a particular institution. In the police force, one must learn to say, we are on top of the situation, even when one is as confused as other citizens out there. In the FRSC, one must learn to relate all road traffic accidents to over-speeding even if the state of the roads is so poor that a speed of more than 10km/h may not be possible. In the aviation industry, one must learn to say, Due to operational reasons, your flight is hereby delayed for so and so minutes. In this part of the world, people do things and get away with it. Just recently my flight, which was supposed to leave Abuja for Sokoto at 10:40a.m. for me to join my colleagues for the 56th Annual Delegates Meeting, was delayed till 12noon. As if that was not enough, at 12 noon they announced that the flight would further be delayed till 2:00pm and in each of the announcement, they would add the phrase, due to operational reasons.
It was later that I gathered that the principal cause of the delay: passengers travelling from Abuja to Sokoto that day were few hence they swapped the initial big flight meant for us with a smaller one which led to the delay. Now, does it mean that in all those hours we were waiting the firm’s engineers were busy servicing the smaller flight which obviously was not meant to depart at that material time ab initio or were we made to wait for a flight to arrive from another destination? These things and many more occur daily in my country and the perpetrators get away with them. They do not consider the welfare of their passengers or their schedules. To an ordinary citizen, the phrase due to operational reasons in our airport is for their safety but for people in the know, the airline operator used the phrase to work on our intelligence as the excuse was a mere charade. After all, the Igbo man said that lies are better told in English. FRSC should be very careful when dealing with some professionals if they still want to maintain their existence.
Before the report was released, FRSC should have known that a predator occasionally can be another animal’s prey. At least, they should have kept quiet like the police who received some money from the survivors.
•Dr.John wrote from Port Harcourt, Rivers State via email@example.com
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